8 Songs, 22 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

All five projects to come from Kanye West’s summer 2018 creative spurt have appeared to be equal collaborations between West and his G.O.O.D. Music colleagues, but that balance manifests itself most clearly on Harlem singer Teyana Taylor’s K.T.S.E.. The project—eight songs, one more than its four predecessors—owes as much to Taylor’s airy melodies as it does to Kanye’s studied production ear; the producer utilises vocal samples as choruses, as bookends to her verses and as the backbone of beats. For her part, Taylor is the embodiment of the formidable, around-the-way-girl persona fans have adored since her debut in the late aughts. Addressing a one-time elephant in the room on “A Rose In Harlem”, Taylor sings, “N*ggas like, ‘You ain’t hot, you ain’t pop/Yet, sup with you and Ye?’” And in K.T.S.E., they have their answer.

EDITORS’ NOTES

All five projects to come from Kanye West’s summer 2018 creative spurt have appeared to be equal collaborations between West and his G.O.O.D. Music colleagues, but that balance manifests itself most clearly on Harlem singer Teyana Taylor’s K.T.S.E.. The project—eight songs, one more than its four predecessors—owes as much to Taylor’s airy melodies as it does to Kanye’s studied production ear; the producer utilises vocal samples as choruses, as bookends to her verses and as the backbone of beats. For her part, Taylor is the embodiment of the formidable, around-the-way-girl persona fans have adored since her debut in the late aughts. Addressing a one-time elephant in the room on “A Rose In Harlem”, Taylor sings, “N*ggas like, ‘You ain’t hot, you ain’t pop/Yet, sup with you and Ye?’” And in K.T.S.E., they have their answer.

TITLE TIME

About Teyana Taylor

Harlem-based singer, rapper, songwriter, dancer, actor, and model Teyana Taylor gained recognition in the States on an early-2007 episode of MTV's My Super Sweet 16. By the time it aired, she had already signed to Star Trak/Interscope, helped popularize the Chicken Noodle Soup dance, and aided in the choreography for Beyoncé's "Ring the Alarm" video. Taylor's brash first single, the Jazze Pha-produced "Google Me," reached number 90 on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart in 2008. The following year, she released a mixtape, From a Planet Called Harlem, and she co-wrote "So Cold" for Chris Brown. In 2010, she contributed some vocals to Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, but her solo career stalled. A couple years later, she was released from her Interscope contract and subsequently uploaded new material as free downloads. She signed to West's Def Jam-affiliated GOOD label, appeared on the Cruel Summer compilation, and released a clutch of steamy R&B singles prior to her proper debut album, VII, in 2014. As an actor, she has appeared in several movies, including Stomp the Yard 2: Homecoming, Madea's Big Happy Family, and The Love Section. ~ Andy Kellman

HOMETOWN
New York, NY [Harlem]
BORN
10 December 1990

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